BOSTON – March 15, 2011- State Representative Jonathan Hecht (D-Watertown) sponsored the annual Massachusetts Department of Mental Health Northeast-Suburban Area Citizen's Legislative Breakfast today in the Great Hall at the State House. The event provided an opportunity for people with mental illness, family members, advocates and providers to meet with state legislators.
In his opening remarks, Representative Hecht said: “One of DMH’s guiding principles is Recovery and Resiliency through Partnership. Consumers, families, advocates, and providers- you are the heart and soul of that partnership. You work to ensure respect for people with mental illness, promote high-quality, patient-centered treatment, and facilitate recovery by helping to maintain housing, education and jobs. I see the impacts your efforts make, and I pledge that we in turn will do our utmost to be good partners with you and with the Department.”
“This is an opportunity for the mental health community—consumers, families, providers and advocates—to meet with their legislators, thank them for their support and discuss with them the many services DMH provides to individuals with serious mental illness,” said Commissioner Barbara A. Leadholm, M.S., M.B.A.
The theme of this year’s DMH breakfast series is “Community First and Our Future.” The event’s centerpiece is the personal stories shared by DMH consumers and their families. Their experiences put a face on mental illness, demonstrate that treatment works and remind us that people with mental illness can achieve important accomplishments. Most importantly, their testimony shows us that they can recover and lead satisfying and productive lives.
More than 300 people including legislators, consumers, family members, advocates and providers attended the breakfast.